The Death with Dignity Act was first passed by
Oregon voters in November 1994.
The use of narcotics and other dangerous drugs is generally prohibited by federal law except when a doctor prescribes them for a “legitimate medical purpose.” On
November 5, 1997, then-Drug Enforcement Administrator
Constantine had announced that since assisting suicide is not "a legitimate medical purpose[,] . . . prescribing a controlled substance with the intent of assisting a suicide" violates federal law.
June 5, 1998, Clinton Administration Attorney General Janet Reno partially overruled
Constantine’s decision. She agreed that "adverse action" might be warranted "where a physician assists in a suicide in a state that has not authorized the practice under any conditions, or where a physician fails to comply with state procedures in doing so.” Nevertheless, she said federally controlled drugs could be prescribed to kill patients when legal under state law. http://www.nrlc.org/press_releases_new/release052604.html
Assisted suicide is against federal law but not state law.
Oregon during 1998-2006, 86,047 Oregonians who suffered from the same underlying diseases died. Of these, 85,755 Oregonians died naturally. The other 292 people died as a result of
Oregon's Death With Dignity Act. Which is to say they died after "ingesting" a lethal dose of drugs, that had been prescribed by a doctor.
Oregon's Death with Dignity Act legalizes physician-assisted suicide, but specifically prohibits euthanasia, where a physician or other person directly administers a medication to end another's life.
In 2005, about 1 in 800 Oregonians' deaths resulted from physician-assisted suicide.
Oregon's Revised Statutes specify that physician assisted suicide, under the Death with Dignity Act "does not constitute suicide, mercy killing or homicide under the Law."
The time it took the 292 Oregonians to die ranged from 5 mins to 8.5 hours. These 292 Americans were mentally and physically able to decide and carryout their plans to die byway of assisted suicide. But how many of the 292 would be alive today if they had not drank the lethal drugs? I ask this question because some of those who received a prescription didn't use their 'poison' until the following year.
In 2004, poisoning suicides accounted for 5,800 of the 32,439 deaths that occurred that years as a result of people committing suicide, without physician assistants.
A few weeks ago I was surfing the net and come across a site with a video that documented the death of one Oregonian woman's physician-assisted suicide.
It was both the saddest, and the sickening thing I had ever wittiness.
It showed the woman the day of her death dancing, laughing, and enjoying her life. Among those present were some pro-deaths. When it came time for her to drink the lethal drugs she climbed into bed and told everyone how wonderful it was not only hearing the music but dancing the polka. She said how she wished she could dance on but the time had come for her to say good-bye. As she drank the deadly mixture, one pro-deather standing next to the bed kept telling her how good she was doing. Three minutes later the woman was in a deep coma. Five hours later she was dead.
Watching this I thought how could anyone stand silently bye and watch a loved one end their own life. Then it hit me those standing nearest the woman,urging her on to end her life were not family members. They were pro-deathers getting high off of watching 'another' physician-assisted suicide.
Oregon woman who requested that the physician write her a prescription for a lethal drug did commit suicide. Though she was responsible for her death, she alone was not morally responsible for her death.
"Death with Dignity suicide" and "suicide by cop" have two important thing in common: cause and effect.
The "suicide by cop" victim relies on a cop to help him commit suicide.
The "Death with Dignity Suicide" victim relies on a doctor to help him end his life.
The big difference, between the two, being police officers are forced to help their victims commit suicide , and doctors have a choice of whether or not to assist in their victim's suicide.
This is where morals comes in to play.
I'm sure most of the readers have heard the saying, "what is legally right is not always morally right." Today, we are experiencing the fallout from laws that have no moral value.
It is the opinion of this writer, that assisted suicide in the name of "Death with Dignity" has no place in a civilized society.
By allowing state government, through its laws, to provide the tools for "assisted suicide" we are allowing the mind set of those who believe in the doctrine of "inequality among men" to thrive.
Suicide, whether or not it's physician asisted, is the needless waste of human life.
what do you think about the death with dignity act in cases were they are terminally ill & in alot of pain ?
I believe that if a person is terminal that with the 'right doctor' his/her life can be less painful and more enjoyable. I believe, instead of looking for reasons for why we should help people die, that we, as members of a freedom loving -society devoted to the high idea of 'equality among men', have a duty to look for reasons that have the potential to give the healthy and the unhealthy individuals the desire to live.